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Cub Tracks can drive 55

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A realistic shot at the playoffs, a late-season spark, Yogi is the King, and other bullets

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Cincinnati Reds v Chicago Cubs
Shake it up
Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images

Now we’re talkin’! 55 runs in four days. That’s a playoff-quality offense. Yanking Cole Hamels when he starts getting barreled is playoff managing. A fifth consecutive winning season is nice, too. Sure, this is taxing— but would you really have it any other way?

And of course Rt 55 connects Chicago and St. Louis, and the playoffs live at that intersection. Right now BBRef has the Cardinals at 91% playoff certainty and the Cubs at 67.5% playoff certainty. Fangraphs says 89.4% and 68.2 respectively. The Dodgers, Braves, and Nationals have higher percentages. The Brewers have a 43.2% likelihood according to Fangraphs. The Mets have less than 1%. Minor miracle my big white butt. The Reds were eliminated from the playoffs last night.

Win or lose, this is what we wanted from TheoJed, to have a realistic shot at the playoffs every year, to have a chance to get into the postseason tournament and maybe bring home the big prize. The ledge seems so far away now... it was looming last week. I had my parachute on, keeping in mind the famous Gary Larson cartoon below. But I was heading out.

Not so much now. Two games behind in the division with a dozen to go, a half-game behind Washington for the top wild-card spot, and Sonny Gray and Yu Darvish on the bump today with meatloaf on the line. That’s entertainment!

National League Central

Cardinals 84-66
Cubs 82-68 2 GB
Brewers 81-69 3 GB

National League Wild Card

Nationals 82-67
Cubs 82-68 0.5 GB
Brewers 81-69 1 GB
Mets 77-73 5 GB

Here’s today’s Cubs News and Notes. As always, * means autoplay on, or annoying ads, or both (directions to remove for Firefox and Chrome). {$} means paywall. {$} means limited views. Italics are often used here as sarcasm font.

“If we play up to our capabilities, we can beat anybody,” Theo Epstein said. “It all starts over once you get into the postseason. We’re looking forward to doing what we need to do to get in there.

Let’s hope Josh VanMeter’s family member is okay.

Food for thought:

Thanks for reading, Alice!